Jennifer L. Holm is well-known for her Babymouse books, starting with Babymouse: Queen of the World (AR 0.5, Level 2.2). Ms. Holm takes a more serious tone in the Newbery Honor Book, Turtle in Paradise (AR 4.0, Level 3.7). Babymouse readers who are moving up to upper-elementary school reading will be pleasantly surprised by the likeable Turtle character.
Like the protagonist in The Absolute Value of Mike (AR 8.0, Level 3.9) by Kathryn Erskine, Turtle has a parent who is in an arrested stage of development. Like Mike, Turtle is sent off to a far away place while the parent is busy with work. In 1935 Florida, Turtle finds a different culture and bonds with her cousins, who run the Diaper Gang. Turtle finds a treasure map and seeks a way to get her family out of financial trouble. Does she succeed? Why has her mom's boyfriends shown up in Florida? Read it and find out!
San Jose Public Library customers enjoyed meeting astronaut Dr. Megan McArthur on March 5th, 2012 at Evergreen Branch Library. This visit was scheduled due to NASA's International Space Station (ISS) national awareness campaign that promotes research opportunities, educates communities about activities performed on the ISS, and communicates the real and potential impacts of the station on our everyday lives. Dr. McArthur was reading Astronaut Handbook children's book on how to become an astronaut and answered questions about ISS, where she was working 14 days, when in space. Adam Padilla, SJPL staff member, filmed a wonderful video of this visit.
Pugs in a Bug by Carolyn Crimi first caught my eye because of the beautiful purples on the cover and the humorous-looking dogs sitting in the Volkswagon. Sure enough, the wonderful illustrations are a delight to behold. When reading the jacket, I was surprised that the artist, Stephanie Buscema, has worked for Marvel and DC comics! As I mentioned before, I really like to see artists stretch beyond their comfortable niches!
As a big proponent of developing reading readiness skills, I was pleasantly surprised to see the phonetic structure and narrative of the book. Young children will enjoy the rhymes along with the funny dogs. I especially enjoyed the way the pastel colors blend from page to page. Add the concept of counting, and you have a great book for toddlers!
Young children will throughly enjoy the story of six dogs as they are each picked up for a pleasant drive. Unexpectedly, they come upon a dog parade and join in for fun and games. Pick this title up for your fun-loving toddler!
Think about what it would be like to walk from Spokane, Washington to New York City. This 3,500 mile, seven month long trek was made in 1896 by a 36 year old Norwegian American woman named Helga Estby and her eighteen-year-old daughter Clara. Helga Estby was a Norwegian immigrant living on a farm in the state of Washington with her husband and eight children. When the farm was threatened with foreclosure because of unpaid taxes, Helga decided to accept a $10,000 wager from an anonymous sponsor of the fashion industry. If Helga could walk across the country wearing the new “reform dress”( shorter skirt ) , following the strict rules set out by the sponsor, she would win $10,000. Helga and her daughter left the family in Washington State and set out on a perilous journey that was fraught with danger, exhaustion and propelled by courage, strength, determination and love for family. This true story is told in the book Bold Spirit: Helga Estby’s Forgotten Walk Across Victorian America , by Linda Lawrence Hunt. Using newspaper clippings, research and memories of Helga’s descendants, Lawrence gives a captivating account of these incredible women defied the accepted norm for women’s behavior and aspirations in 1896. Author Jane Kirkpatrick has written a compelling and moving historical fiction novel based on Helga Estby’s walk across the United States. This novel, The Daughter’s Walk : A Novel tells the story of the walk and then moves forward to daughter Clara Estby’s continued journey through life. These two outstanding books are fine tributes to the strength, determination and the struggles for rights and independence that women faced in the late 19thCentury.
Think about what it would be like to walk from Spokane, Washington to New York City. This 3,500 mile, seven month long trek was made in 1896 by a 36 year old Norwegian American woman named Helga Estby and her eighteen-year-old daughter Clara. Helga Estby was a Norwegian immigrant living on a farm in Washington State with her husband and eight children. When the farm was threatened with foreclosure because of unpaid taxes, Helga decided to accept a $10,000 wager from an anonymous sponsor of the fashion industry. If Helga could walk across the country wearing the new “reform dress”( shorter skirt ) , following the strict rules set out by the sponsor, she would win $10,000. Helga and her daughter left the family in Washington State and set out on a perilous journey that was fraught with danger, exhaustion and propelled by courage, strength, determination and love for family. This true story is told in the book Bold Spirit: Helga Estby’s Forgotten Walk Across Victorian America, by Linda Lawrence Hunt. Using newspaper clippings, research and memories of Helga’s descendants, Hunt has pieced together a captivating account of a long forgotten trek made by two incredible women who defied society's restrictions on women’s behavior and aspirations in 1896.
Author Jane Kirkpatrick has written a compelling and moving historical fiction novel based on Helga Estby’s walk across the United States. The Daughter’s Walk : A Novel tells the story of the walk and then moves forward to daughter Clara Estby’s continued journey through life. These two outstanding books are fine tributes to the strength, determination and struggle for rights and independence that American women faced during the late 19thCentury.
This highly-acclaimed and beautifully atmospheric film by German director, Wim Wenders, reveals a world of trench-coated angels inhabiting the skies above a war-wounded Berlin who descend to earth to listen to the conflicted thoughts of mortals, extending comfort and love. One angel’s emotional investment deepens to the point where he yearns to become mortal himself, having fallen in love with a graceful trapeze performer.
Being a librarian, one of the things that I liked the most about this visually stunning and psychologically-nuanced movie was that one physical space in which these angels silently spoke to the melancholy humans in need of their comfort and care were the communal yet contemplative spaces of libraries.
Oddly enough, Peter Falk, plays himself in this absorbing and original film.
Attention art lovers, lovers of beautiful scenery and lovers of national parks—we have a program for you! Local artist Allen Figone will be at Santa Teresa Library on Saturday March 16 at 1:00 pm displaying his art and speaking about his experiences in various national parks. Take this opportunity to meet the artist and hear him speak about his creative efforts representing some of America’s most famous national parks.
A San Jose native, Mr. Figone received his training at San Jose City College and San Jose State University. He has won awards in local shows throughout the Bay Area and his paintings have been featured in galleries from Oregon to New Jersey.
From his website: “Most recently Allen has achieved National level recognition as a finalist in “ The Art of Seeing Nature” Oakland Museum of Art, “Arts for the Parks 2005 and 2006”(triple finalist), Jackson Hole, Wyoming, and “Oil Painters of America Western Regional Juried Exhibition 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009. He also was a finalist in the 2008 and 2009 Oil Painters of America National Juried Exhibitions. The Grand Canyon Association purchased Allen’s painting “Drama Along Bright Angel Trail” which was one of two paintings that were finalists in the 2008 Paint the Parks National Exhibition Top 100. In 2009 Paint the Parks he was again a multiple finalist with paintings in the Top 100 and Mini 50 as well. Allen was also one of 66 contemporary artists selected internationally to represent Zion National Park in “A Century of Sanctuary” The Art of Zion National Park, National Exhibition (in commemoration of its 100 year Anniversary), held at the St. George Museum, St. George, Utah. Allen’s painting “Afternoon Shadows” has now been added to the permanent collection of the St. George Museum.
As an artist Allen has taken the skills he learned doing technical Illustration and combined that with what he has learned from studying the Early California Impressionists, which he has admired and studied for years, to create a unique style of painting to shape his aesthetic vision.
‘My painting philosophy is simple: to capture nature as I see her and to depict the colors and values I see as exactingly as possible. Art is about seeing, interpreting and painting the performance.’
The Landry News (AR 4.0, Level 6.0) is an older title by the school-related author, Andrew Clements. However, it's theme is so timely because of the unobjective news reporting practiced by many cable "news" networks. Please also note the wonderful illustrations by the Invention of Hugo Cabret and Wonderstruck author, Brian Selznick!
Cara, whose parents have divorced, first used her newspaper, The Landry News as a way to inappropriately express the truth, no matter who was hurt. Now she is at a new school. She disapproves of the lacksadaical way that her fifth grade teacher, Mr. Larson, runs his classroom. She prints her dissatisfaction in her newspaper. How will Mr. Larson react when he sees it?
The Constitution's First Amendment is explored in this novel. Should truth be tempered by mercy? How does truth and mercy fit in The Landry News? Will Mr. Larson ever change? Find out and check out this wonderful book!
This year on March 12, 2012 the Girls Scouts of America will celebrate their 100th birthday. When I learned this, I was a bit surprised. Girls Scouts is so ingrained in my consciousness I was sure they were older than that. I was a Girl Scout when I was young. My cousin Donna was the troop leader, so I guess I figured it was in my blood. I vacillated between hiding from things that were too scary for wimpy me and reaching my dreams of learning new things.
I have to admit that some of the things we did at summer day camp were pretty boring and tedious. How many sit-upons and lumpy bead necklaces does one girl need? But they also took me beyond my expectations: making a campfire, cooking on it, camping outside, hiking in the woods, exploring careers, getting along with all kinds of people, making do with what you have. My strong, wild, creative cousin showed me that a girl can be whatever and whoever she wants to be. So thank you GSA (and Donna!) for helping me to become the strong, not so wild, creative, happy and successful woman I am today. You can do it, too!
When is the last time you went to a sleepover? Why not plan one today? Sleepovers, also known as pajama parties or slumber parties, are a great inexpensive way to have fun. You don’t need to buy a lot and you don’t need to be a good dancer. Kids often have sleepovers for special occasions like birthdays, but you don’t need a special reason to have a sleepover. Just find a date that works for you and invite a bunch of friends. Have everyone bring pajamas, a toothbrush, a sleeping bag and pillow, and a favorite snack to share.
You can watch movies, bake cookies, give makeovers and play games. Some favorite sleepover games include Truth or Dare and pillow fights. You can play music and talk or play board games (or all three!) until the wee hours. In the summer you can sleep outside under the stars. Here are some books with more great ideas on having a sleepover. You don’t need a reason – it’s always the season for a sleepover!
Oh no, the book I want isn’t on the shelf. I really wanted to read 'The Hunger Games' but it’s checked out… everywhere!"
Or maybe you finished all three Hunger Games books and are wondering what to read next.
Well the Library has a nifty tool to help. Click on Books and Media at the top of our site. In the section about books, click on What to Read Now (NoveList). Enter your library card number and PIN to enter NoveList. Entering the title "Hunter Games" you come up with a list that includes terrific books from authors such as Scott Westerfeld and Nancy Farmer.
NoveList lets you type in a title, an author, subject or keyword, and then creates a list of similar books for you. You can even refine the list by pace of the story, setting, audience age group and more.
Give it a try when you’re wondering what to read next.